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Lights of America Shop-Light Repaired

By on May 26, 2015
SHOPLIGHT REPAIR

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SHOPLIGHT REPAIR

My son brought this Lights of America shop light to me to fix. He said that his grandpa told him that it would cut off by itself after running for 30 minutes or so. It didn’t have any lamps in it and I don’t have any either.

 

It uses two 4foot T8 lamps. So I took it apart to see what I could find out.

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I noticed right away that the ground wire was loose in the perforated slot in the frame. It wasn’t soldered or tight. I took the PCB out of the case to inspect it. The plastic case wasn’t melted or anything.

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I had to remove the cover piece of tin that covers the wires going to the other end of the shop light. Then I removed the bracket for the 2 lamps at the other end so I could feed the wires through the end of the plastic case to take the PCB out. Then I unsoldered the wires on both ends for the lamps to remove the PCB for inspection.

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You can see around the middle of the PCB that it has been getting hot and has discolored the PCB darker. Something must be causing the device to draw too much current.

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One of the Diacs checked to be bad, so I will replace both of them. The Diodes checked good with my meters.

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I checked all of the main components and they checked good.

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I checked all of the capacitors, and they all checked good except two of them. The CBB28 1600V 472J cap in the photo above measured above the tolerance for capacitance.

The CBB28 1kV 222J cap in the next photo checked good on capacitance, but failed the insulation test. It showed a resistance of 10.5 GΩ. Hopefully replacing the 2 capacitors, 2 DB3 diacs, and re-soldering the cold solder joints, will fix the problem with this shop light.

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This is my Smart Sensor Model AR907+ Digital Insulation Tester that I bought on Ebay for around $40US. I don’t remember exactly how much it was but it has proven to be a good tester. It has testing voltages of 50, 100, 250, 500, and 1KV. It has a good LCD backlight, auto discharge function, live wire warning and audio indication, auto power off in 10 minutes without any operation, low battery indication, and AC voltage measurement between 30 – 600V AC (50/60 HZ). It uses 6 AA batteries, and I have been getting pretty good battery life.

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Checking the Diacs with a VOM on X10K, it should have no reading either way. One Diac checked good but the other failed as can be seen in the next photo.

The VOM I’m using is my new BK Precision 114A that I bought on Ebay. This meter has been discontinued, but was brand new and still in the box! It still has the protective film on the face cover! Somebody put it up and never used it, and then sold it for some reason. At first I thought it may be a fake meter, but I took a chance and I am glad I did! It is a genuine meter and I got a really good deal on it! After taking it apart, I could clearly see the great components and workmanship of the meter. After receiving 2 fake Sunwa meters, it was nice finally getting a great genuine meter! I may never find another meter like this one in brand new condition. I also couldn’t wait to write an article so I could show it off. Many people don’t know how beneficial VOM’s with the X10K range are – they think the VOM’s are obsolete and useless. Those of us that know how useful they are can get good VOM’s at great prices! It just takes some searching and taking a chance!

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Using my VOM on the X10K range, the first Diac passed, but the second Diac failed on one way, moving the needle to the 2K mark. I decided to go ahead and replace both of them. The other components were good after I removed and checked them all off board. The new Diacs that I bought are smaller than these, and are blue. They are rated at 2A.

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The new components are soldered in, and the PCB is ready for soldering the wires up and putting the shop light back together for testing. Nearly every connection has been re-soldered with good solder.

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The shop light is reassembled and the new bulbs are installed. I will test it for a couple of hours to make sure it is fixed and working good.

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The shop light has been on for 2 hours now and working great! This repair is finished. I hope you guys enjoy this article.

Robert Calk is a hobbyist from Texas, USA and loves learning electronics and device repair.

 

 

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46 Comments

  1. Chris

    May 26, 2015 at 11:37 pm

    Congratulations Robert.
    Excellent job.

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 6:21 am

      Thanks Chris.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  2. Albert

    May 26, 2015 at 11:37 pm

    Hi Robert, You have Great instruments and Great experience ! So to me you are no 'Beginner' as you said before, but a Real Professional Electronics Engineer !!
    PS: Hope the bad weather (Days of Rain and Tornado's we see on the news concerning Texas) pass over you without damages....
    PS2: It seems that all FR9882 components are Sold out in China at the moment. And Ebay never had those.

    Albert.

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 6:31 am

      Thanks Albert. I have close to 3 years experience. I spend a lot of time studying my books. I've probably read Mr. Yong's books 10 times.
      Yes, we have been having some pretty good storms! Thank you for your concern. I have been pretty lucky; but many people have not.
      I sent an email to the company that Andre suggested but have not received a reply yet. I will probably start back on it tomorrow after I change the circuit on my breadboard. I'm pretty sure that I only ruined 2 of the IC's, so hopefully when the inductor is fixed in the circuit the IC will output the proper voltage.

      Likes(1)Dislikes(0)
      • Albert

        May 27, 2015 at 2:32 pm

        I am very curious to read how your project continues in coming part#3, Robert. Take your time. I would also have liked testing these FR9882 since it made me wondering why none worked in your good experiment. But I do not have any FR9882 and couldn't buy them either.
        Looks like I myself have to buy an Isolation tester too, since I don't have one. And you do seem to have very good results with it.
        Never thought I would need one until I read your article on how to test those bad capacitors. I hope to also find a good Smart Sensor Model AR907+ Digital Insulation Tester on Ebay. Thanks for this very usefull info!
        Albert.

        Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
        • Robert Calk

          May 27, 2015 at 8:46 pm

          You are welcome, Albert. The insulation tester has been pretty good so far. It's good to test the caps under voltage.

          Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
        • Robert Calk

          May 30, 2015 at 5:38 pm

          Hi Albert. I am working on Part 3 now. I left a comment about it in the Part 2 comments you can read. Thanks for your interest and support.

          Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Tony

      May 27, 2015 at 11:49 am

      Have you try the sweepstakes to win a smart house from HGTV along with $100k and a new car for this year?Guess where the house is? In TEXAS! MAYBE THE HOUSE IS GONE BY NOW BE BECAUSE OF OF THE TORNADOES! Oh by the way Robert,you did a great job.Keep up the good work.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
      • Robert Calk

        May 27, 2015 at 8:48 pm

        Thanks Tony. I'm glad you liked the article. No I have not entered the sweepstakes. I rarely win anything anyways.

        Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  3. Andre Gopee

    May 27, 2015 at 12:10 am

    Nice article Robert, I enjoyed reading. One question though; You said you use your insulation tester and the Cap read 10 G ohms. What should be the reading you suppose to get? I have an Insulation tester and sometimes I really don't know how to read the values. Can you please explain.

    Likes(2)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 6:47 am

      Thanks Andre. I'm glad you enjoyed the article.
      My Insulation Tester will read up to 50G. When a capacitor is good, the tester should read "OL", and not give an Ohm reading at all. If the cap gives an Ohm reading, then it is bad because caps are not supposed to allow DC current to pass through them. So the cap in the article was working in the circuit as a 10.5Gohm resistor.

      Likes(4)Dislikes(0)
      • Humberto

        May 27, 2015 at 8:05 pm

        Thanks for this explanation Robert.

        Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
        • Robert Calk

          May 27, 2015 at 8:50 pm

          My pleasure Humberto.

          Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  4. Yogesh Panchal

    May 27, 2015 at 1:21 am

    Congratulations! for this fix .I have one request could to try testing failed capacitors with "Blue ESR Meter" and please let us know what result you are getting?.

    Likes(2)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 6:57 am

      Thanks Yogesh. I already through the bad caps away. It's better to use the ESR meter on caps 1uF and above. If a cap fails capacitance or the insulation test then the ESR's really don't matter.

      Likes(2)Dislikes(0)
  5. Wes

    May 27, 2015 at 2:56 am

    A great project and nice photos. Cold joints and bad grounding are a common problem with those type light's.. Very good repair job.

    Likes(2)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 7:01 am

      Thanks Wes. Yes, the majority of faults I find are bad solder joints.

      Likes(2)Dislikes(0)
  6. Anthony

    May 27, 2015 at 3:48 am

    Hi Robert,
    I enjoyed reading this article very much ! As usual you provide fantastic photos and a terrific step by step
    narrative of your fault finding and rectification process ! I admire how you leave nothing to chance and
    you see the job right through to the very end with great patience and diligence ! I really think you should
    do some detective work on the side.....Why don't you have a crack at the JFK mystery.....I'm sure you
    would be able to sift through all the data and nail who did it !.....Nice work again Robert !

    Regards
    Anthony

    Likes(2)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 7:07 am

      Thanks for your kind words Anthony. I guess device repair is kind of like detective work - looking for the culprits. lol
      I was 3 years old when JFK was assassinated, and I can still remember my mother crying as she was watching the TV that day.

      Likes(1)Dislikes(0)
    • Anthony

      May 27, 2015 at 7:02 pm

      Yes, the whole world was crying with her too Robert....
      Kind Regards

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  7. Abdul

    May 27, 2015 at 7:59 am

    Hi Robert,
    I enjoyed reading this article especially when you are introducing your instruments, the place and the price you bought especially the troubleshooting.
    Thank you.

    Likes(2)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 8:57 pm

      Thanks Abdul. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Of course I don't receive any money or anything for showing my meters, but If they are working good then maybe others will take a chance on getting one. I was very happy to show off my BK Precision VOM though.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  8. Arsenio Valeza

    May 27, 2015 at 12:50 pm

    Thanks for your very informative repair techniques, additional knowledge in the world of repair.

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 9:00 pm

      You are welcome, Arsenio. And thank you for supporting our efforts and commenting. I can't do a lot but I do what I can.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  9. Debirt Maynard

    May 27, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    Very Thorough... Your approach is to be commended: Most people won't invest the kind of time you put in in a repair job. The client can expect the shop light to work for a long time to come.

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 9:06 pm

      Thanks Debirt. I'm just a hobbyist that repairs devices for myself, family, and friends when I'm not feeling too bad. When you have the right tools it doesn't take too long to test components. I could strip the whole board with my Hakko 808 in just a couple of minutes.

      Likes(1)Dislikes(0)
  10. bagheri

    May 27, 2015 at 4:01 pm

    HI ROBERT.very good .thanks for you.

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 9:08 pm

      You are welcome Bagheri. I'm glad you enjoyed the article.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  11. Zed

    May 27, 2015 at 5:47 pm

    nice article and nice information on capacitor test by insulation tester Robert. i check this insulation tester and its price is $91

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 9:12 pm

      Thanks Zed. Wow! They sure have gone up on the price! Since they are that expensive it might be better to add some to that price and get a good analog insulation tester. The main reason I bought the digital one is because the analog testers are so expensive. Plus this one has more voltages to choose.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Albert

      May 27, 2015 at 9:54 pm

      Hi Zed, this one on Ebay is cheaper but in red housing instead of yellow.
      http://www.ebay.com/itm/AR907A-Digital-Insulation-Resistance-Tester-Megger-Genuine-Original-AR-907A-/201257259910?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2edbde1386

      I think I buy this one also myself...
      Greetings
      Albert.

      Likes(1)Dislikes(0)
      • Robert Calk

        May 28, 2015 at 11:30 pm

        I found one like mine for $54 + $30 shipping at this site:http://www.ebay.com/itm/High-Voltage-1000V-Insulation-Resistance-Tester-Megger-Range-19-9GOhm-AR907/301640623579?_trksid=p2047675.c100005.m1851&_trkparms=aid%3D222007%26algo%3DSIC.MBE%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20131003132420%26meid%3Dc04b32e4ad0d44f8a8b3bcf4d8215563%26pid%3D100005%26rk%3D2%26rkt%3D6%26sd%3D201257259910&rt=nc

        I like mine better because it has the 50V range.

        Likes(1)Dislikes(0)
  12. Ehsan Murad

    May 27, 2015 at 7:35 pm

    I think that the device will be better than new now.

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 27, 2015 at 9:14 pm

      Thanks Ehsan. I hope so.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  13. sam montero

    May 28, 2015 at 6:40 am

    Hi Robert
    I call this unit an electronic ballast and they
    dont last like the old inductor type. They are cheaply made to about a dollar per unit. The danger is they could cause a fire for some unfused once. However its a good discovery of
    the circuit to play around on it.

    Sam

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 28, 2015 at 11:20 pm

      Thanks Sam. I don't see how they could build it that cheap. I probably should put a fuse in it.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  14. shihab kably

    May 28, 2015 at 12:42 pm

    good job my friend

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 30, 2015 at 12:32 am

      Thanks Shihab. I'm glad you enjoyed my article.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  15. marco tapia

    May 29, 2015 at 11:31 am

    Hi Robert, I always love your articles because you investigate,isolate and you check all components which is what I like to do and I also learn something from your articles so thanks again for taking the time to post this article. 🙂

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 30, 2015 at 12:36 am

      You are very welcome, Marco. I'm glad you enjoy my articles and learn something sometimes. I appreciate your kind words.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  16. Florin

    May 29, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    I liked the repair.
    Awaiting an article and exterior/inside photos of your BK Precision 114A.

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      May 30, 2015 at 12:41 am

      Thanks Florin. I'm happy that you like the article. I don't think Mr. Yong would want to have an article just showing the meter because this is a repair website. But in my next article, I'll try to sneak in a photo of the VOMs' PCB.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  17. Taring K Arioka

    June 9, 2015 at 12:12 am

    Nice work. Thanks for sharing.

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      June 9, 2015 at 11:23 am

      You are welcome, Taring. Thanks for commenting.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
  18. Hafiz

    June 28, 2015 at 10:58 pm

    Nice article .

    Likes(0)Dislikes(0)
    • Robert Calk

      July 7, 2015 at 2:29 am

      Thanks Hafiz. I'm glad you liked it.

      Likes(0)Dislikes(0)

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